The importance of listening to truth.
Daniel knew the truth. He knew why God brought judgement on His people. He knew because he believed what was written in Scripture long before this calamity had arrived. He also knew when the judgement would be over, the temple rebuilt, when the Messiah would come and the exact day He would be crucified. The angel Gabriel told him. Daniel 9:24-27 (NASB) God has declared the end from the beginning, and raised up prophets to declare His will to man.
“As it is written in the law of Moses, all this calamity has come on us; yet we have not sought the favor of the Lord our God by turning from our iniquity and giving attention to Your truth. Therefore the Lord has kept the calamity in store and brought it on us; for the Lord our God is righteous with respect to all His deeds which He has done, but we have not obeyed His voice.
“And now, O Lord our God, who have brought Your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand and have made a name for Yourself, as it is this day—we have sinned, we have been wicked.” Daniel 9:13-15 (NASB)
They didn’t pay attention to truth, nor did they depart from evil. They were given the truth and could have sought God’s blessings, but they didn’t. So, stuff happened to get their attention. We have entered the age of stuff happening. Look around! Stuff that neither you nor I can control. From new fault lines to new viruses, from economic jubilation to trembling in fear, man’s heart races. Lies seem to satisfy the hopeful, and debt promises freedom.
How did we get in this mess? The same way Israel did! When men quite paying attention to truth they redefined morality. The Holy God of Scripture is rejected because He will not agree with sin. Other gods are offered to fill the place rightly His. Now men deny that our circumstances could be from Him. Voices claim, “Just vote for the right leader who will get us out of this mess.” Do you see how easy it will be for the evil one to take control?
Things will get a lot messier, God’s judgement has only just begun. Draw near to Him.
“Guard your steps as you go to the house of God and draw near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know they are doing evil.” (Ecclesiastes 5:1 NASB)